Romelu Lukaku close to returning from Inter loan to boost Chelsea spending with Raheem Sterling top of shopping list
CHELSEA are preparing to kick off their summer as Romelu Lukaku completes his return to Inter Milan.
The Blues flop will return to San Siro on loan, with the Italians set to improve their loan fee offer in the coming days.
Lukaku’s exit – after a disastrous season following his record £97.5m transfer last summer – will pave the way for Thomas Tuchel to add to his attacking line.
And, as SunSport reported earlier this month, Manchester City star Raheem Sterling is high on Tuchel’s shopping list.
The England winger, 27, has just one year left on his contract with the Etihad and is considering his options this summer.
Sterling is yet to make a decision on his future, but Chelsea are ready to bring him back to London after growing up in Brent.
Sterling has 131 goals in 339 City appearances and – even though he is a free agent next summer – the Premier League champions still want up to £60m to sell in this window.
In October last year, Sterling admitted he would be ready to leave for more playing time.
Speaking at an FT Live event, Sterling said: “If there was the option of going somewhere else for more playing time I would be open to that.”
He was named on the bench for both legs of City’s Champions League semi-final loss to Real Madrid and the final two Premier League games of the season.
FREE BETS AND SIGNUP OFFERS – BEST OFFERS FOR NEW CUSTOMERS
As well as chasing Sterling, Chelsea are also interested in Barcelona’s Ousmane Dembele.
The 25-year-old French ace is open to a move to Stamford Bridge on a free transfer as long as Tuchel, who coached the winger at Borussia Dortmund, can give him assurances about his playing time.
Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski is also attracting strong interest.
The Poland international, 33, has made it clear he wants to leave the German club, but Barcelona are his preferred choice.
Tuchel also needs to take care of his back after already losing Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen as their contracts expired this summer.